Let’s talk about air travel for a bit. I never, ever eat airplane food anymore. After years of partaking in complementary in-flight meals and dealing with the resulting, brutal stomach aches, I realized that it’s the always-questionable food that was making me feel unwell, not so much the elevation as I initially suspected. The first time I brought my own, home-cooked meal onto an overseas flight was a revelation – I felt none of the usual discomfort after eating and could actually get some sleep. Since then, I take all kinds of steps to prepare for air travel, especially long, international flights and find the extra effort to be very much worth it.
First off, a few days before flying, I make an extra effort to stay hydrated and to eat at least a few very nutritious and balanced meals. Along with buying a huge water bottle after security, I bring a few sleepy-time tea bags with me on the flight, then ask the flight attendant for hot water and steep a strong, relaxing cup of tea, which helps me go to sleep, since I usually need help. A good sleep mask is always good for blocking out the neighbor’s screen light, too. For food, I like to bring a spinach, strawberry and basil salad, which sounds complicated but is really the best. Since I usually travel during the summer, all three of those ingredients are at peak season and taste amazing on their own, so no dressing is needed and the salad is leak-proof, almost weightless and very manageable. I feel nourished and light after that salad and don’t crave much more.
For snacks, I will make some kind of sprouted seed bars and pack a few strips of untoasted nori, along with some dark chocolate. And I find that having an apple helps freshen up after an airplane nap.
It’s amazing to see the bewilderment on the flight attendants’ and seat neighbors’ faces when they realize I’ve brought my own food and even teabags – it’s just not a common practice at all. But with the huge difference it makes, I don’t see why not!
Since I’ve learnt that eating miso might be helpful when it comes to countering the radiation we are exposed to on any given flight, I’ve been trying to incorporate it into my pre-flight meals, whenever I can remember. Aside from the obvious miso soup, I’ve been making this miso latte, warm in the winter and iced in the summer, before heading out the door for the airport. It’s very quick and has that whole delicious balance of sweet, salty and umami flavors going for it. There is also an immunity boost from turmeric, honey and ginger to help you fight off the myriad germs swirling around that flying can you will be spending some time in :)
If you have any in-flight health tips, I would love to hear them! Always looking for more. Enjoy!
P.S. We are on Snapchat under golubkakitchen, follow along for behind-the-scenes GK.
- 2 cups almond milk
- 1-inch piece ginger - sliced (optional)
- 2-3 teaspoons sweet miso paste
- 2 teaspoons raw honey
- ⅛ teaspoon turmeric (optional)
- black pepper - if using turmeric, for optimal absorption
- If using ginger, simmer it in the milk for 10 minutes, then strain. If not using ginger, warm the milk on its own. Combine warmed milk with the rest of the ingredients in a blender and serve hot, sprinkled with more turmeric and black pepper, if desired.
- If using ginger, simmer it in the milk for 10 minutes and let cool. If not using ginger combine cold milk with the rest of the ingredients in a blender and serve over ice, sprinkled with more turmeric and black pepper, if desired.